BJP Launches ‘Chai Pe Charcha’ With NaMo; Vote Bank Appeasement, Or A Useful Tool?

Posted on February 5, 2014 in Politics

By Tanaya Singh:

The News: While a part of the country will be throwing the “tea-seller” remark on BJP’s Prime Ministerial candidate Narendra Modi, the party will be conducting sessions of its newest campaign called “chai pe charcha“. As announced by BJP on Tuesday, Narendra Modi will be launching this campaign on the 12th of this month.


According to the plan, these ‘nukkad meetings‘ will be conducted at 1000 different location all over the country and the first of “Chai Pe Charcha with NaMo” (a discussion over tea with Modi) will be launched on 12th in which he will be participating at Ahmadabad. As told by Sushma Swaraj, these sessions will be divided into three parts including share, ask and suggest where people can share their experiences and give suggestions. This programme will be held between 6:00 – 8:00 pm. The BJP also plans to use DTH, satellite, internet, mobile phone and social media to boost the campaign. According to the party, people can give in their suggestions through phones or social media during and after the events.

[blockquote source=”Sushma Swaraj”]Chai pe charcha is a new and extensive effort. It has never been tried before. When four people get together over a cup of tea they discuss politics and this discussion takes place without any tension. This is the basis of our campaign “Chai Pe Charcha”. It is an entirely Indian concept. We are trying to reach out to two crore people through this programme. This campaign is so big that there will be at least 10 rounds and if time allows there will be 12-15 rounds as well. The rounds will be conducted in 1000 locations. We have identified the 1000 locations from 27 states. Five mediums will be used for the campaign - DTH, satellite, internet, mobile phones and social media[/blockquote]

When I first heard of “Chai Pe Charcha with NaMo“, my TV-loving, entertainment seeking mind, jumped to draw an analogy of the concept with the much entertaining “Koffee With Karan“. But then no complaints here.

The second thought in my mind was; if and only if, these discussions about politics and governance over tea are well managed by BJP and do not turn into a Modi-advertisement machinery, are democratically organized and consider people from all backgrounds and ideologies (and not just NaMo supporters), they will be of great use to the common man. But then again, who can control the hopes of a mind that is very tired of advertisements praising political parties.